Do new payment systems and financial services give women more autonomy in decision making about their everyday economic lives? How do women creatively use these new technologies and other financial instruments to reconstitute their role in society? What are some of the challenges to women’s financial inclusion?
Research from the Philippines, Kenya, Paraguay, Nigeria, Mexico and India demonstrates that women’s access to and engagements with money are extremely varied and strongly influenced by entrenched socio-cultural and economic modes of exclusion. Therefore women employ a host of different financial management strategies as means of empowerment – from hiding money in coke bottles, to rearing ruminants to speculating in gold. Moreover, financial education of women emerges as an important prerequisite for financial inclusion and one IMTFI research team recommends the use of cartoons and visual media to achieve that goal.